in memoriam

Poet Adrienne Rich and musician Earl Scruggs have both passed away.  Both were powerful artists who made wide contributions to their fields in long years of productive work.

Rich was homeschooled in her early years:

Adrienne Rich - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"Adrienne Rich was born in Baltimore, Maryland, the older of two sisters. Her father, the renowned pathologist Arnold Rice Rich, was a professor of medicine at Johns Hopkins Medical School, and her mother, Helen Elizabeth (Jones) Rich,[3] was a concert pianist until she married. Her father was Jewish[4] and her mother was a Southern Protestant;[5] the girls were raised as Christians. Adrienne Rich's early poetic influence stemmed from her father who encouraged her to read but also to write her own poetry. Her interest in literature was sparked within her father's library where she read the work of writers such as Ibsen,[6] Arnold, Blake, Keats, Rossetti, and Tennyson. Her father was ambitious for Adrienne and "planned to create a prodigy." Adrienne Rich and her younger sister were home schooled by their mother until Adrienne began public education in the fourth grade. The poems Sources and After Dark document her relationship with her father, describing how she worked hard to fulfill her parents' ambitions for her - moving into a world in which she was expected to excel.[6]"
Earl Scruggs taught himself banjo at an early age without any lessons or instruction:

Biography -
Earl began playing the banjo at the age of four using a two finger style picking. "The only way I could pick Junie's banjo, or the old one my father played, was to sit on the floor with the body part of the banjo to my right and slide it around quite a bit, depending on what position on the neck I was attempting to play."
"When Earl was growing up, he spent most of his spare time playing the banjo. Since his father was not around, and he was deprived of fatherly companionship, his emotional outlet was in the music he loved. Then, too, there was nothing much for a young boy on a farm to do except work in those depression ravaged days. Whatever enjoyment he had, he found it playing the banjo. The family did not have a radio until he was in his teens. What he learned was self taught." ...
"At the age of ten, he developed a style utilizing three fingers that was to become known world-wide as "Scruggs-Style Picking." The banjo was, for all practical purposes, "reborn" as a musical instrument due to the talent and prominence Earl Scruggs gave to the instrument."
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